There is never a dull moment on Craiglist. Today, we have a 1997 Suzuki X90 with a small block 355, aluminum intake manifold, Edelbrock 650 cfm carburetor, roller rockers, headers, flowmasters, and a 700R4 transmission with a shift kit. Yes, you read that right. If there was ever a time in your life when you needed to gather up $6500 to purchase a vehicle to scare yourself in, this is it. Let’s be honest, this little red devil would be a handful with your grandma behind the wheel. Burnouts would be had, and maybe even wheelies. Before long grandma would be crashing through the front of a pharmacy. Honestly, I’m left nearly speechless.
Whoa! This week, the 1A Blog landed at #6 on CouponAudit’s “Top 100 Auto Blogs to Follow in 2013″! A few of our friends made the list as well. We’re humbled and honored to be among some of the other great websites on this list. We will make 2013 bigger and better than 2012 for sure.
In the interest of shining a light on the OEM vs aftermarket truth, I wanted to show off a little something I noticed during my travels. Not too long ago, I replaced my timing belt, pulleys, hydraulic tensioner, and water pump on my 2005 Subaru Impreza RS 2.5 SOHC (booo no turbo, I know, I know, it was a good deal). As you can imagine, I got part number GAEEK00038 from 1A Auto (Hey, I can throw a subtle ad in here if I want, amirite?) Anyway, the timing belt kit that I purchased was made by Gates, who is a very well known, and reputable brand in the auto part world. When I opened the box, it was a bit of an “Ah Ha!” moment. Mixed in with the Gates brand water pump and belt, were OEM pulleys! They had all the same markings as the OEM ones that I pulled off of my Subaru. Yes, 100% totally identical in every way. Cool right? (New ones on the left, old ones on the right)
Much like I had seen in the past, even though it is considered an “aftermarket” part, it may actually be OEM. Now, obviously this is not the case every time. In fact, I would say that it is the minority. But, hey, it happens more than you might think. Beautiful “aftermarket” …ehem… OEM… parts at a bargain price!
As you may have heard, in New England, we have rusty cars. Lots of them. It’s disgusting. The best that we can hope for is that our fenders and suspension don’t fly off unexpectedly on the highway. Because that kind of stuff actually happens around here. Quite regularly, I see control arms rotted in half, entire mufflers in the middle of the road, and struts where the lower coil mount snaps off and allows the coil to stab the tire.
Being a car-guy, I like my cars, so one of the actions that I enjoy doing every few months is cleaning debris out of my front fenders. It’s strange, I know, but I do it regularly with hopes that it will make some kind of difference in the life of the vehicle. That being said, I never keep a car long enough to find out. It’s a blessing and a curse I guess.
So anywho… I usually start by staring at the lower section of my fender to figure out what needs to happen for me to get the gross stuff out.
On my 2005 Subaru Impreza, I began this process by removing the black plastic inner fender. Behind it is where I found about 3 lbs of dirt, mud, sticks, bugs and pine needles… Notice how lovely the area looks with that pollen covered water line. Nice.
I come from a long line of car-guys (and gals!), so when looking through old family photo albums, I occasionally discover automotive gold. This was the case on Thanksgiving 2012. I was scouring through old albums looking for pictures of muscle cars that my parents, aunts, and uncles once owned, and there it was. Amidst some blurry pictures of “Jungle Jim’s” famous funny car, was a New England Dragway entrance ticket from August 6th 1972. How intriguing I thought… I pulled it out of the album and flipped over the business card that was with it, only to discover something truly incredible. The business card was actually a time slip from my dad’s voyage down the quarter mile. And how quick & fast was he? Continue reading In the 1972, Drag Racing Was a Bit Slower.